Secretive nonprofits flourished — and succeeded — in 2014 state elections

By Reity O'Brien

Nonprofits backed winning candidates, or bashed losers, in 63 percent of the state races in which they sponsored ads.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Koch Industries":

"… nd cast ballots. Michael K. Morgan, a top government affairs consultant to Koch Industries who runs the group, declined to be interviewed by the Center for Public In …"

Tell us about your experience with political ads

By The Center for Public Integrity

Americans saw more than 2 million TV ads during Election 2014 — did you find them to be informative?

The meanest U.S. Senate races of all

By Chris Kirk and Dave Levinthal

Many of the nation's most competitive U.S. races featured the most negative political advertising.

Excerpts from this story referencing "North Carolina":

"… ive and negative messages. The closest races had the most mudslinging. In North Carolina, where the U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan, a Democrat, and Thom Tillis, a Republican, …"

North Carolina's state of political hate

By Dave Levinthal

North Carolina's U.S. Senate race is the nation's nastiest — and few are particularly friendly affairs.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Scott Brown":

"… en. Jeanne Shaheen in particular hammering Republican challenger Scott Brown on his record as a politician in Massachusetts. For the third week in a r …"

Ads in U.S. Senate contests turn nasty

By Dave Levinthal

More than seven in 10 U.S. Senate-focused television ads last week attacked or criticized a political candidate.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Louisiana":

"… S. Senate-focused attack ads splashed across Arkansas, Colorado, Kentucky, Louisiana and North Carolina. The National Republican Senatorial Committee produced …"

Non-candidate spending increases in state elections

By Rachel Baye, Reity O'Brien, Kytja Weir and Ben Wieder

TV ad spending in state elections since 2010 is down, but the portion ponied up by political nonprofits and state-level super PACs rises.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Jon Bruning":

"… y favorite Pete Ricketts ahead of establishment candidate Attorney General Jon Bruning to win the GOP nomination for governor in the May primary. “Nebraska ha …"

Iowa, Michigan bombarded with political ads

By Michael Beckel

Open-seat Senate battles in Iowa and Michigan have attracted a flurry of TV ads.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Louisiana":

"… V ads across eight, battleground states: Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Iowa, Louisiana, Michigan, North Carolina and New Hampshire. Since the beginning of 2013, …"

Koch-backed seniors group low-balling election spending?

By Michael Beckel

The 60 Plus Association tells the IRS it barely spends money on politics — despite funding millions in candidate attack ads.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Senate primary":

"… spent more than $250,000 on political ads, mostly in Nebraska’s GOP U.S. Senate primary, where it endorsed Midland University President Ben Sasse, who ultimately …"

Attack ads may actually be benefiting Obamacare enrollment

By Wendell Potter

Publicity from attacks may actually help hike enrollment.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Kaiser Family Foundation":

"… te drop the most: 10.74 points. . Yet another study, this one by the Kaiser Family Foundation, which tracks public opinion on the ACA every month, found that in June, m …"

U.S. Chamber targets Dems in state attorney general races

By Ben Wieder

Why are powerful business interests underwriting ads in AG races in the states?

Excerpts from this story referencing "Law Enforcement Alliance of America":

"… cess. In Texas’ 2002 state attorney general race, a group called the “Law Enforcement Alliance of America” helped torpedo Democrat Kirk Watson’s chances. Watson filed suit to f …"

Daily Disclosure: Obama slammed with $37 million in attack ads

By Rachael Marcus

Obama is hit with $37 million in attack ads, Romney with less than $1 million

Excerpts from this story referencing "Tim Kaine":

"… opposing Flake.The Senate race in Virginia between former Democratic Gov. Tim Kaine and former Republican Sen. George Allen attracted $1.7 million. More than …"

Super PACs, nonprofits favored Romney over Obama

By Michael Beckel and Russ Choma

Funds from outside contributors neutralized Obama's fundraising advantage.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Politics":

"… analysis of Federal Election Commission data by the Center for Responsive Politics and the Center for Public Integrity. The Centers' analysis covers the peri …"

"… Election Commission who co-founded the conservative Center for Competitive Politics.“[Super PACs] have helped to level the playing field between Romney and …"

"… and distortions.”Researchers Robert Maguire of the Center for Responsive Politics and Alexandra Duszak of the Center for Public Integrity contributed to thi …"

"… tion between the Center for Public Integrity and the Center for Responsive Politics. For up-to-date news on outside spending in the 2012 election, follow our …"

Daily Disclosure: Tea party PAC turns Democratic attack on its head

By Rachael Marcus

A new attack ad from a tea party-aligned PAC say President Barack Obama treats the presidency as "spring break."

Daily Disclosure: Ads by anonymous political groups bash Obama on big night

By Rachael Marcus

President Barack Obama will take center stage amid a barrage of negative ads in North Carolina.

Environmental groups target New Mexico Senate race

By Alexandra Duszak and Reity O'Brien

Environmental groups are outspending big business for New Mexico Senate seat.

Excerpts from this story referencing "New Mexico":

"… iving end of more than $1.4 million to date in attack ads urging voters in New Mexico not to vote for her.But it’s not big-business-backed super PACs that are …"

"… ng on those ads to be reported until 60 days prior to the general election.New Mexico, the “Land of Enchantment,” possesses extraordinary beauty and complex …"

"… cent of the population. Obama is favored to win in 2012.Wilson represented New Mexico’s 1st District — the same seat her opponent now holds — from 1998 to …"

"… Rep. Steve Pearce, who was ultimately defeated by then-Rep. Tom Udall, now New Mexico’s junior U.S. Senator. She sat on the Energy and Commerce Committee, and …"

Daily Disclosure: Crossroads GPS hits North Dakota's Heitkamp

By Rachael Marcus

GOP-aligned dark money group Crossroads GPS launches second round of ads in North Dakota in as many weeks.

Excerpts from this story referencing "attorney":

"… ed Heitkamp of spending taxpayer dollars on private airplanes when she was attorney general of the state, a claim Heitkamp denounced as “completely false. …"

"… a pay-to-play relationship with an out-of-state trial lawyer when she was attorney general, a position she held from 1993 through 2000. Heitkamp tapped Jack …"

"… rom 1993 through 2000. Heitkamp tapped Jack McConnell, Jr., a Rhode Island attorney, to help the state implement its settlement in the Big Tobacco lawsuit of …"

"… lement its settlement in the Big Tobacco lawsuit of the 1990s, in which 46 attorneys general, including Heitkamp, sued major tobacco companies to recover toba …"

Former governor wins GOP Senate nod in Wisconsin

By Reity O'Brien and Michael Beckel

Former Gov. Tommy Thompson wins despite heavy spending by conservative super PAC.

Excerpts from this story referencing "PAC Club for Growth Action":

"… f former House Majority Leader Dick Armey’s FreedomWorks group.The super PAC Club for Growth Action alone outspent all other non-campaign groups in the hotly contested race, …"

Daily Disclosure: U.S. Chamber drops $5.9 million on ad blitz

By Rachael Marcus

Ad blitz targets eight key Senate races with attack ads.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Missouri":

"… only Republican senatorial candidate it has attacked is Sarah Steelman in Missouri, because the Chamber favors her rival, Republican businessman John Brunner …"

"… xico, Ohio and Wisconsin. But it has not commented on its ads in Virginia, Missouri and Maine.Until recently, the secretive Chamber only bought electioneering …"

"… xploration off Virginia’s coast, over President Obama’s opposition.The Missouri ad links Democrat McCaskill to Steelman, one of her Republican rivals, say …"

"… r Never PAC, a super PAC supporting GOP Senate candidate Sarah Steelman of Missouri, reported spending $218,000 on Friday on ads opposing John Brunner, her ch …"

FEC deadlocks on Super PAC ad coordination with candidates

By Sandy Johnson

American Crossroads had sought approval to coordinate its ads with candidates

One House seat in Kentucky embodies how outside groups dominate politics — with money

By Anne Farris Rosen

Candidates become mere pawns as big-money groups duke it out with attack ads

Excerpts from this story referencing "Kentucky":

"… y.    …"

"… .In this one congressional district, national outside groups — some with Kentucky connections — financed a barrage of negative ads that exemplify how loca …"

"… stakes rematch between Chandler and Barr.As a result, residents of central Kentucky have witnessed the advent of the endless political campaign. The ubiquitou …"

"… still more than a year away, will be no less messy or expensive than 2010.Kentucky’s 6th District is  a microcosm of the unprecedented and often unreg …"

Tim Pawlenty's ties to "Swift Boat" Bob Perry

By Delal Pektas and Kelsey Sheehy

Texas donor of "Swift Boat" fame has long come to Tim Pawlenty's aid

Excerpts from this story referencing "Center for Responsive Politics":

"… rry donated $9.7 million to 527 political groups in 2006, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. According to CRP and Texans for Public Justice, his donations included:$5 …"

The final countdown

By Josh Israel and Aaron Mehta

If the story of this election is the rise of outside spending, the lesson we at You Report Election 2010 learned is that following the money

Excerpts from this story referencing "Politics":

"… lection? The amount is difficult to pinpoint but the Center for Responsive Politics estimates nearly $394 million. Of that, about $193.5 million was spent by …"

Crossroads GPS ad attacks Harry Reid, and attack ads

By Josh Israel and Aaron Mehta

Crossroads Grassroots Political Strategies (GPS), a conservative group that has poured millions of dollars into attack ads, is airing a new

Excerpts from this story referencing "American Crossroads":

"… lespie, Crossroads GPS is tax-exempt 501(c)(4) advocacy group connected to American Crossroads. The group’s new 30-second ad encourages Nevada voters to defeat the Sen …"

"… atic Sen. Patty Murray.Jonathan Collegio, spokesman for Crossroads GPS and American Crossroads, explained the strategy behind the ad. “Toward the end of the election c …"

Campaign MoneyWatch takes aim at Ken Buck’s loaded history

By Aaron Mehta and Josh Israel

It must be Ken Buck week here at You Report central. A reader in Colorado followed up yesterday’s post about an education group’s attack ad

Excerpts from this story referencing "Michael Bennet":

"… political donations.”Buck’s opponent — Colorado Democratic incumbent Michael Bennet — co-sponsored the Fair Elections Now Act, legislation that would cap in …"